Posts Tagged ‘Story of the Week’

Back to the Basics

After several months of pretty specific themes on The Merry Librarian, we’re going back to our roots for April! We’ve got a collection of wacky patron interactions, reference desk shockers, and some miscommunication moments worthy of a good, old-fashioned forehead-smack. Moments like these are what it’s all about! (We think…)

I was a young librarian, on the desk, still clueless enough for coworkers to be entertained by me getting the weirdos.  My patron approached.  “Do you have a phone book for Deerfield, Michigan?”  No, I was sorry, we did not, (cue shock! and explanation that we paid for phone books, so didn’t get out-of-state books) but I was sure I could find the number for him if he would let me know what he was looking for.  “Well, the Ford Museum.”  Okay, so I found him the phone number and asked if he wanted to know their hours – was he planning a trip?  “No,” but the hours would be great – he’d been there.  Could he call them from the library phone?  No, he could not, but perhaps he could email them?  “Can you help me set up an email account?”  Sure, I could, no problem.  As we moved toward the computers he let me know what he REALLY wanted.  “See, I was at that museum, and they had this video for sale about Henry Ford, and I thought I’d call them and see if they could loan me a copy of it.”  Ah, well, I was sure we could interlibrary loan that for him.  No email necessary!  “You DO that?”

My favorite circumnavigation of the question ever.


Thanks to a fellow librarian in Munich, Germany for this next one!

I’m working at a museum library in Munich, Germany. Last month there was a retraining for the new RDA-system which should be presented to us. In the auditorium were over 150 librarians from all over Bavaria, the teacher talked for hours and after five hours one elderly librarian asked:
“And how to deploy RDA in card catalogues?”
The teacher looked very confused.
“This retraining concerns RDA. It’s a system for online cataloging. You’ve got STILL card catalogues???”

Greetings from Munich!


Security Guards at libraries get the wackos, drunks, vagabonds and vagrants…but apparently they don’t get to answer basic questions…

In most of our Branches our security personal are also trained to perform clerk duties, at the Circ desk.  One of our Security/Monitor person at our branch will cover the Circ Desk while staff is at lunch or working on a project. I was staffing the Information desk, while he was staffing the Circ Desk. I was helping a patron and noticed that the line was getting longer while patron lined up at the Info desk.  I looked over to the Circ Desk a noticed that no one was  standing  there, except for our security monitor asking patron if they needed help, and they would reply no thanks,  then move quietly over to the Info Desk.

I  then asked the next patron in line that the person at the Circ desk would be able to help her and she looked at our security person then looked at me and said, “He can’t help me. He is just Security!”

I looked over to him and he says, “All I wanted was a simple retirement job, where are those termination papers?”


Giving Harry Potter a Hand…Down Under

Librarians of the World: Australia

We love our readers here at The Merry Librarian. Your stories have made us laugh, touched our hearts, and even given us the creeps a time or two. As more people discover us, we continue to develope a faithful global audience of readers. In celebration of this, Merry has decided to host our first ever “Librarians of the World” month, exclusively featuring stories from librarians outside of the United States. March of 2010 will be dedicated to those fearless librarians working down under in Australia. We are excited to celebrate Australian librarians all month long!

Thank you to those of you who’ve already submitted stories. And to our many other international readers, we hope you’ll submit your stories as well! We look forward to featuring more stories from the librarians of the world in the future!

Our first story from Down Under might make J.K. Rowling blush, we’re afraid. Nonetheless, we got a giggle out of this tale from Sydney, Australia.

I used to work in a public library in Sydney (as a library assistant).

A patron was on one of the computer pods connected to the Internet. The computer is right by the stairs and also under a surveillance camera. A male staff member walked past the patron and saw him with his hand inside his pants, and alerted security staff. Security looked at the guy via CCTV for a little while, and went upstairs to the patron and asked him to leave the library. The patron asked why, and security pointed at his pants’ zipper and said “You know why.”

When asked what he was doing on the internet, the patron replied that he was reading Harry Potter.

The patron was then banned. He attempted to come back into the library but security already knew to not let him in.

I had walked behind him in the past [prior to this event] and saw him reading lots of text on the screen in Chinese. My guess is that he was reading some steamy stories in Chinese, which somehow didn’t get blocked by the censoring software.

~“Betty” Sydney, Australia

Send us your stories at, or call or text your stories in at (216) 23M-ERRY! (216-236-3779)

Library Lovebirds

These library lovebirds won the Valentine’s Day posting because, out of all of our entries, they were the only couple we found that actually held their wedding ceremony in the library! We had to honor their unique decision by featuring them as the Story of the Week this week. Thank you for your story, Kassia and Andrew, and many congratulations!
Library Lovebirds: Kassia and Andrew
"I Do" at the Reference Desk
“I Do” at the Reference Desk
Library Lovebirds
Library Lovebirds

My name is Kassia and I am the Young Adult Librarian at the East Islip Public Library in New York.  Two years ago, my husband and I got married at our hometown library.

 I grew up in East Islip and have worked at the library for ten years.  I started as a student page while in high school.  I stayed home for college and found that it was difficult to meet nice guys while commuting to school and living and working in a small town.  My mother, in her infinite wisdom, always told me I would meet someone at the library. 

Lo and behold, in my sophomore year of college, I noticed a handsome patron who had been coming in to read. Andrew had just returned home from college and was catching up on some peaceful reading at the library.  We exchanged phone numbers and began dating.

 Andrew and I got engaged while I was completing my graduate studies in library science.  During this time, the library had undergone an addition and renovation.  Going to work each day I admired the library’s grand entryway and open main floor.  We were looking for a place to have our ceremony when it struck me; if we moved the tables on the main floor leading up to the reference desk, we could make an aisle with program chairs.  Andrew and I thought it would be wonderful to have our ceremony in the exact place that facilitated our meeting.     
We received board approval provided that our ceremony was held on a day that the library was closed.  We chose Sunday, September 2, 2007, the last closed Sunday before the library resumed Sunday hours.  With the help of our wedding party the night before the wedding, we moved the tables and chairs into the stacks and arranged the program chairs to face the reference desk.  Decoration was minimal as we wanted to highlight the beauty of the building.  That day, everything went smoothly, except for the phone that rang towards the end of the ceremony!
Reference Wedding Aisle
What’s New With Merry?

Merry's Book Club has arrived!

The highly-anticipated debut of Merry's Book Club is finally here! Check out reviews of books by fellow librarians and book lovers, and even purchase the titles you love through Merry's Book Store!

NEW! Call In A Story Line

Now all US readers can call or text your stories into The Merry Librarian. Call us at
(216) 23M-ERRY today!

Very Merry Fan Pages

Visit our fan page on Facebook:

Follow us on Twitter, too!

Related Links
Merry’s Book Store